MCCS' Bengali channel to be co-branded; looking for April-May launch

MUMBAI: The Bengali new year, 15 April, has good news for, who else but, Bengalis. A proposed Bengali channel from the ABP Group-Rupert Murdoch combine is on its way, scheduled to be put on air late April or early May, while plans for foraying into select other Indian languages, including English, are being spruced up.

The 24-hour Bengali news channel will also be co-branded. This lays to rest speculations on the channel not carrying the Star brand name.

"We are expecting the formalities to be completed very soon, including getting an uplink permission from India. After that happens, it will be just a matter of time before we put the Bengali channel on air. Internally, we are ready," Media Content & Communications Services India Pvt. Ltd (MCCS) CEO Uday Shankar told Indiantelevision in an interview.

MCCS, a 74:26 per cent joint venture between the Aveek Sarkar-controlled Kolkata-based ABP Group and Murdoch-promoted Star Group, manages Star News channel. It has ambitions of creating a bouquet of select other Indian language-specific news channels.

Dwelling on the company's expansion plans, Shankar said that the company has drawn up plans to consolidate its position with Star News even while tapping regional language markets with channels that would have a "national outlook."

"We are in the process of evaluating what should be the next move after the Bengali channel is put on air. But we certainly have lined up several activities for this year," he added, hinting that MCCS is investing afresh in technology, human resources and, may be, even in distribution activities.

Meanwhile, trusted Sarkar aide, Suman Chattopadhyay, will be the executive editor for the proposed Bengali channel, which is being kept in the unencrypted free-to-air mode. "The present regulatory set-up does not make sense for us to go pay and get inadequate subscription revenue," Shankar explained.

BBC's design arm BBC Broadcast Design, which was instrumental in providing a new look for Star News in February, will be responsible for the graphics and on-air look of the Bengali channel too.

On the programming front, the proposed channel will have a blend of programming that is aimed at attracting Bengali speaking audiences nationally. However, due focus on local (West Bengal-specific) news too would be given as MCCS would like to capitialise on the ABP Group strong presence in eastern India.

The Kolkata-based company publishes The Telegraph in English and the widely circulated Bengali newspaper Ananda Bazar Patrika, both of whom have the ambition to be national dailies.

Latest Reads
BIG Magic acquires 'Boonie Bears' exclusive FTA rights

BIG Magic has acquired exclusive FTA rights of ‘Boonie Bears’, the No.1 and most popular animated series in China. BIG Magic has renamed it ‘Babloo Dabloo’ for the Hindi viewing audience. Babloo Dabloo airs every Monday – Sunday 10 am – 11 am & 5 pm – 6 pm only on BIG Magic

Television TV Channels GECs
PBL: Setting stage for next big thing on Indian sporting landscape

India has witnessed the emergence of a multi-sports culture over the past few years. This significant development has come on the back of a promising display by Indian sportspersons across various disciplines, the meteoric rise of home grown leagues and the consequent widening of the fan base of...

Television TV Channels Sports
CNNMoney new section will be about the fastest growing economy; MoneyStream app launched

MUMBAI: Attracting 1.8 million average monthly page views, witnessing a 37 per cent growth in video consumption and 16 per cent in unique browsers month-on-month from India in less than a year’s time is not smooth. In its ambitious plan of global expansion, CNN Digital is leaving no stone unturned...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Content a 'Game of Thrones'; AT&T's control over HBO, Cartoon Network, Warner Bros faces regulatory lens

The global media landscape is resulting in a new juggernaut as an internet and cable behemoth yesterday purchased an entertainment conglomerate making the former unmatched in its size and reach to consumers through home broadband, smartphones, satellite television and a battery of movies and cable...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
US$ 4.5 bn expected from IPL rights; SC recommends accounts scrutiny

The Supreme Court on Friday froze all financial transactions between the BCCI and state cricket associations by directing the apex body not to disburse any funds till it resolves to abide by the Justice RM Lodha panel recommendations on reforms by 3 December . The top court ordered that none of...

Television TV Channels Sports
TVS Tyres is co-presenter for Asian Champions Trophy 2016

Continuing its strong connect with sports, TVS Tyres has associated with Asian Champions Trophy 2016 by becoming the co-presenter. The Asian Champions Trophy is one of the premier hockey tournaments, a much sought after annual international competition promising some great hockey action. This...

Television TV Channels Sports
Q2-17: Zee Learn declares maiden interim dividend

The board of directors of the Essel group’s education company Zee Learn Limited (ZLL) have declared a first time ever dividend of 5 percent per equity share of Re 1 each for the quarter ended 30 September 2016 (Q2-17, current quarter).

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Whether BARC action can stop unethical practices?

MUMBAI: Can businesses and industries practise their art of selling fairly although they have 'Fair Practices' training during academic courses, workshops and several ISO and other certifications? There seems to be the fear of the lawman, and not the law in India. If the traffic cop is watching,...

Television TV Channels Viewership
TV Superhighway: beIN, Yaddo, AfricaXP have joined us, says Magine CEO Ambuj Goyal

CANNES; Magine has secured partnerships with four of the industry’s most exciting sports, documentary and entertainment content providers. Partnerships with beIN, the international media group and owner of MIRAMAX; Yaddo, the new documentary streaming service headed up by former head of The BBC’s...

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories